Saturday, October 6, 2012

Weeks 5 and 6- Mexico!

This week I'm linking up with My Father's World Highlights!

Our school year seems to be flying by. Okay, I realize it's only the end of our 6th week, but I truly look forward to each new day of school.  Studying a country for two weeks is a lot of fun and just enough time to follow some rabbit trails and not get bored.  We are loving My Father's World!

The past two weeks we spent in Mexico.  The kids got the first stamp in their passport as we crossed the border.  ( The passport is part of MFW- a really great idea).  Mexico is dear to our hearts because we sponsor a child from Compassion International from this country.  We write letters to Samuel and we have seen him grow and see the darkness in his eyes turn to light over the past few years of receiving pictures!

Pinatas are a Mexican tradition, particularly for Cinco de Mayo.  We had never made one from scratch, but we gave it a try.  Brown Eyed Girl made hers using a cereal box and Mister did the tradition balloon. I was very skeptical that the balloon pinata would work.  Paper mache is very messy!  I'm surprised Mister, who is a neat freak, was as intent to do this project as he was.

Surprise, surprise, the paper mache balloon held together and we hung it to dry.  It was soooo heavy!

In the meantime, we continue with our regular studies as well.  Mister is using Spelling Power this year and I think it is going pretty well. I like the philosophy behind it, I tweak it a little, and I have found myself surprised by what Mister can spell.  One of Spelling Power's methods is to do spelling activities that involve the five senses. Here, Mister writes misspelled words with fingerpaints.  He didn't complain :)

Once the pinatas were dry, painting began.  Brown Eyed Girl made hers a Mexican flag, and Mister's is going to be a globe. But I confess it's not finished yet.

  Petite is planking on the counter while painting.  Look how grown up she is getting!  She joins us in a lot of activities and has lots of things she can do to stay busy nearby.  She loves her school box, especially the markers. She can easily spend an hour coloring with those- and not just coloring books. Herself too.

Tissue paper flowers are popular at Mexican holidays, so we made a bunch. After I learned how to do it, which took forever.  I am so not crafty!  Once we got the hang of it, we made them in all sizes, made headbands, hung them from the curtain rods, and the kids decorated the staircase with them for our Mexican fiesta!

One thing that is making this year so great is that the cousins are doing the exact same things in school as we are! Almost daily, my kids ask if C & M are doing the same thing, and C & M ask the same of Auntie Jen.  This seems to be motivating to all of us!

We did the classic blindfolding and spinning the pinata whacker the number of years of their age, then went to doing it without the blindfold.  I took a while, the string broke (as I figured it would) and we ended up putting it on a stake, but eventually we got the pinata open and the goodies inside came out.

Later that night we had our fiesta, with homemade tortillas (more like gorditas, no tortilla press for me), lots of fillings, and guacamole, salsa, cheese dips!  We made Mexican wedding cookies for dessert as well as my version of churros.  Mariachi music was playing via the Internet.  When Josh offered up the prayer for the meal, we all chimed in with an  OLE! instead of an Amen.  Unit studies are too much fun!

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